When the Arizona Cardinals took the field for their preseason opener against the Houston Texans last Saturday night, it appeared they were shorthanded at the wide receiver position.
Michael Floyd, who tweaked a groin at the end of Thursday’s practice, and Ted Ginn Jr., who banged knees with another player on special teams the same day, wouldn’t suit up.
The Cardinals’ passing game looked like it was in midseason form in a 32-0 win at University of Phoenix Stadium.
Even without Floyd and Ginn, wide receivers combined to catch 22 passes for 269 yards and three touchdowns in the victory.
With that kind of depth on the roster, general manager Steve Keim and head coach Bruce Arians have some big decisions to make in terms of how many receivers they’ll keep heading into the regular season.
“Well, Bruce and I have talked about potentially five or six,” Keim told Doug and Wolf Monday on Arizona Sports 98.7 FM. “For that last spot, whether it’s a guy who plays so well — whether it’s Walt Powell or Brittan Golden or Jaron Brown — depending on how well those guys continue to play will determine how many we keep.”
All three excelled against Houston. Powell, a rookie sixth-round draft pick out of Murray State, had three catches for 74 yards, including the longest play from scrimmage in the game, a 45-yard catch and run in the second quarter. Golden had a team-leading seven catches for 45 yards and showed his ability in returning kickoffs and punts. Brown has been very consistent in camp and continued his stellar play Saturday, snaring a 5-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Drew Stanton in the first quarter.
Keim is expecting the battle for the last spot or two to go down to the wire.
“No doubt about it,” he said. “That’s the kind of problem you want to have as a general manager. As hard as it is to cut good players, you want to be in a position, in terms of depth, where you’re cutting players that are going to land somewhere else.”